Dreamforce 2015: Strengthening the Microsoft and Salesforce Partnership

Salesforce and Microsoft have A LOT of mutual customers – millions of business users trust Microsoft and Salesforce’s industry-leading apps and platforms to run their businesses. These customers have long desired simple and easy to use integrated solutions from our two companies. 

This week, at Dreamforce 2015, Microsoft and Salesforce showcased the significant progress we’ve made since we announced our partnership in May October 2014 and announced plans to take it even farther. It’s an exciting time for the industry and for the developers that depend on both Microsoft and its partners to delight their customers. This is yet another example of the types of partnership that are starting to transform the industry. Recently we announced our work with Mesosphere in bringing Apache Mesos to Windows Server last month and today in conjunction with salesforce, open collaborations like these are set to truly change the computing landscape.

There is a long list of work we’ve already done together with Salesforce, including a Salesforce App for Outlook, Salesforce Exchange Sync, SharePoint and OneDrive for Business integration with Salesforce, Salesforce1 and Office integration, Salesforce1 on Windows 10, Power Query Integration with Salesforce, Power BI for Office 365 integration with Salesforce, and Salesforce Wave Connector for Excel.  The focus of the partnership is focused on supporting integration of workloads and scenarios that add the most value for our shared customers.

This week we announced plans to enable some incredible new scenarios:

Skype for Business integration with Salesforce Lightning, a modern and re-imagined Salesforce that combines an intelligent new user experience with proven best practices that enable people to work faster and smarter. Office 365 customers will be able to use Skype for Business to create Web meetings, determine if colleagues are online or not, click to chat and make voice and video calls from the Salesforce Lightning Experience. A preview is anticipated in the second half of 2016.

  • OneNote Integration with Salesforce Lightning: Users will be able to associate notes with Salesforce records, and view and edit notes directly in OneNote from the Salesforce Lightning Experience. A preview is anticipated in the second half of 2016.

  • We also announced Salesforce integration with Office Graph and Office Delve. By integrating with the Office Graph API, Salesforce becomes part of an open ecosystem for sharing, collaboration and discovery, enabling Office 365 users to now view and discover Salesforce content in Office Delve, such as opportunities, accounts and cases. Availability is anticipated in the second half of 2016.

  • Finally, we announced that Salesforce will deliver a Windows 10 app to empower sales teams to move deals forward while on the go, using their favorite Windows device. Availability is anticipated in the second half of 2016.  

But true collaboration isn’t just about apps, API integration, SDKs and infrastructure, it is about sitting down with Salesforce developers. At DreamForce, we had dozens of sessions where we were on hand to help those developers bridge across Microsoft and SalesForce technologies.

One area we really focused upon in these sessions were scenarios that require connecting to Salesforce data into your mobile application.  We’ve worked hard to ensure that exposing Salesforce Connectors through Azure API apps is seamless. We’ve also ensured that creating a Portable Class Library to consume the service is very simple. Thanks to these new integrations within Visual Studio 2015, working with Salesforce has never been easier.

Speaking of Visual Studio 2015, which RTMed on July 20th, it now enables .NET and front-end web developers to easily become mobile developers. Visual Studio 2015 now connects to SalesForce in numerous ways – in Amanda Silver’s blog post, she discusses how to build custom mobile apps for iOS, Android, or Windows which connect to SalesForce data with Visual Studio 2015. 

Another area we focused upon in live sessions was collaboration amongst developers.  Microsoft’s Visual Studio Online has been tailored to support the collaboration scenarios that Salesforce developers value.  From full support for unlimited private Git repos including private and shared branches, to great tools to manage your backlog – Visual Studio Online is focused on supporting the needs of Salesforce developers. Whether using Windows 10, OS/X, Linux or Unix, you’ll find a welcome home for your teams’ work with Visual Studio Online. 

I’m incredibly proud of the work that has come out of our partnership with Salesforce. The results have enabled new solutions that make every day takes simpler, and easier, for customers and for developers. We’re incredibly excited about the customer excitement we’ve seen so far and we’re looking forward to creating even more, together, in the future.



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